Friday, April 4, 2014

A-Z: Classic Monsters - D is for Dragons

The A-Z post today on Classic Monsters is for the letter "D."  I didn't choose a particular monster character but an entire monster species itself: Dragons.  I'm sure there are other D monsters you came up with, but Dragons are to me incredibly fascinating.  Don't you agree?


The original myth of Dragons

Nearly every culture you can imagine has some sort of myth about the gargantuan-sized reptilian beasts that fly and breathe fire.  The Chinese, for example, have artifacts depicting their famous Chinese dragons as early as the 16th century B.C. Dragons have also been immortalized in Greek Mythology dating back to the times of Ancient Greece.  Their impressive history is massive and has bewitched us for what it feels like an eternity.  Read more about their history and where I found my facts here.


Do they exist?

Kimono Dragons do.  And boy are they bad ass!  As for the ones that scour Earth's skies, terrorizing humans by pillaging towns with flame or better yet, the ones that guard precious treasures in dark caves lodges on the side of mountain those dragons exist? my head they do, but in reality?  No.  And I'm not sure if we as humans could handle all that awesomeness.

Classics Featuring Dragons

Beowulf, a poem written by an anonymous poet some time around the 10th century according to the British Library.  It features three battles with our hero, Beowulf who in the end fights a dragon in an epic battle.  This may have been one of the first times we are introduced the idea of the dragon-slayer.

Have you read Beowulf?  I haven't and I admit, I'm feeling a little ashamed with myself.  But I did download the classic on Amazon for Free for your Kindle so I'll get to it at some point.  What about the animated film version of Beowulf remake done in 2007?

Dungeons and Dragons

This role playing game designed by designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson has been around since the 1970's and has since spawned a cult following phenomena that I would say has deemed it a classic.  (Read here about Gary getting his own statue in Lake Geneva.)   Fans are obsessed, some for the old school board method and other now onto the online version.  One of the many cool aspects of this game are, of course, the dragons.  From the original game their are five dragons i.e. white, black, green, blue, and red and they reign today a most fearsome classic monster.      

The dragons in the Game of Thrones

George R. R. Martin's A Dance with Dragons is Book 5 of the Song of Ice and Fire series.  What I love most about this series is like Tolkien, Martin writes like his stories are from ancient times, making you almost believe it's the way things were in a time long forgotten.  The dragons, for example, even in the story are represented as such.  Many characters believe they have died with the members of the House Targaryen,  Dragons on myths until Daenerys Targaryen (Khaleesi) births her dragon babes in a blazing fire.  Oooh....I love this series and as you can see above with my gif, I love those dragons.

Have you read the series?  Do you want a pet dragon?  Have you watched the HBO series, Game of Thrones?  Season Four starts APRIL 6, 2014.  See the trailers here.

Obviously, I could go on and on with other great classics like the recent "How to Train a Dragon," and many others.  Dragons are a classic monster don't you think?  Do you have a favorite classic film or book that features the terrifying beasts?

Mina B.


Natasha Duncan-Drake said...

Dragons are awesome - I love dragons. I think my earliest recollection of a dragon story has to be George and the dragon, but the one that made the most impact at a young age was The Hobbit. Then there was the movie Dragonslayer.
Tasha's Thinkings - AtoZ (Vampires)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I was a big D&D geek back in the day!
I don't have HBO, but I have access through a friend, and I've been enjoying Game of Thrones.

Tonja said...

Dragons aren't real? :)

S. L. Hennessy said...

Dragons, yay! My favorite. Can't wait for Game of Thrones on Sunday!

Mich said...

Even though I hate pretty much everyone except Jamie, I am SUPER EXCITED for GoT coming back. ....I'd be more excited for the next book, but I feel like we're in for a long wait for that.

I've always thought that dragons must have existed at some point. Nearly every single culture has their own dragon legends--that can't be a coincidence.

Smaug is my fav. :D

Jolie du Pre said...

Dragons go as far back as 4000 B.C. They are some of our most popular monsters!

Precious Monsters

Sophie Duncan said...

More dragons, yay! A few folks I'm visiting have done dragons today and I love them, so it's all good to me :)
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Timothy Brannan said...

Another Dragon post! I love dragons and write about them quite a bit myself.

Great post!

Timothy S. Brannan
The Other Side, April Blog Challenge: The A to Z of Witches

Georgina Morales said...

I soooo want a pet dragon! My heart broke when they didn't allow Hagrid to keep his little spitfire. =(

I came for the ISWG but found your A to Z series so interesting, I couldn't leave! I'll keep popping up. Can't wait to see what monsters you have planned in the future.

MAJK said...

I happened to pop into your blog today on a random link on A to Z and I am glad I did. Dragons are by far one of my favorite fantasy creatures.

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djinnia said...

i love dragons. my favorite series to feature them has to be patricia wrede's series calling on dragons, where the princess runs away to live with the dragon!

and then there is always the excellent dragon's bait by vivian vande velde.

i wasn't much of a fan of game of thrones book. haven't seen the series yet.

but smaug is awesome. can't wait to get the second movie just to see him.

DonnaGalanti said...

Mina, those kimodo dragons always scared me! That's one way to go. I have not watched Game of Thrones yet. Will I be sucked in? Right now I've become obsessed with Supernatural (and its 2 cuties!)and wouldn't put it past them if a dragon appears in an upcoming episode!

R Scott Amsbaugh said...

How To Train your Dragon was a good movie. Eragon - another movie favorite. Good topic.

Anonymous said...

Nice! Dragons are excellent monsters. I loved Benedict Cumberbatch's voice acting for the "Desolation of Smaug," I thought he did an awesome job of creating a properly creepy and evil voice for a dragon. :)

Happy A to Z-ing.

Alicia @

N J Magas said...

I have several favorites:

-Strabo, in Terry Brooks's Landover Series
-Patricia C. Wrede's Dealing With Dragons series delighted me when I was younger.
-Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly
- His Majesty's Dragon by Naomi Novik

I could go on and on. :)

Samantha Geary Jones said...

You had me the moment I saw Daenerys, Mother of Dragons,perched at the top of your post! Another author friend & I wrote a dark "re-imagining" of Puff the Magic Dragon for audiomachine. Honalee's not been the same since:)

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Heather Holden said...

Who doesn't love dragons?! They're always fascinating to read about, or to see in shows and movies. (The one from Jane and the Dragon is a fun, family-friendly version...)

Laura Clipson said...

I love dragons, although I doubt I would if they actually existed. They're awesome to read about/watch, though!

Herding Cats - Burning Soup said...

I LOVE dragons! Especially in my romance books :) They're such fun characters and so fascinating. I really love dragon tattoos as well. Really...anything dragon is good. Villain, hero, etc. Great choice!

Happy A to Z-ing!
herding cats & burning soup.